Baltimore Man Sentenced To Over Four Years For Millions In CARES Act Fraud
BALTIMORE COUNTY - A U.S. district court sentenced Baltimore resident Robert Hopkins to 51 months in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release for wire fraud conspiracy and aggravated identity theft, according to police.
A judge has also ordered the 37-year-old to pay $456,784 in restitution. According to Hopkins’s guilty plea, he and his 46-year-old accomplice Keon Ball incurred over $1,000,000 in charges on fraudulently established credit lines.
Police say the duo used stolen social security numbers and names to spend over $150,000 at a home improvement store and later purchased heavy construction equipment valued at $300,000 using the same method.
Hopkins and Ball founded four shell companies to apply for $664,450 in fraudulent Payment Protection Program loans. They additionally filed false tax documents claiming to have paid wages to multiple W-2 employees and withheld hundreds of thousands of dollars of federal income tax, according to police.
In reality, the fake businesses had no employees, and the loans were never distributed to Hopkins and Ball.
According to court documents, they caused more than $449,000 in damages and would have caused a loss of $1,100,000 had their PPP loans been granted.